To Play or Not to Play

by Lincoln

I believe sports are one of God’s gifts to us here on earth. Sports are recreational activities that provide wholesome entertainment and people like to participate. However, every professional sport, and even some college, high school, and little league sports play games on Sundays.

But what’s the big deal? Isn’t Sunday just like any other day of the week? No, Sunday is the Sabbath Day; a day set aside by God to be a day of worship and rest. To put it into the words of the scriptures, “And on the seventh day God ended his work, which he had made; and he rested… And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” (Genesis 2:2-3)

I’ve been playing sports since I was a little kid. When I was younger, I wasn’t faced with the conflict of playing on Sunday, but things got more challenging as I got older. When I was 12, I joined a very competitive baseball team. In our first tournament as a team, we went to Las Vegas. We played games Friday and Saturday, but when the Sunday games came up, I had to explain my beliefs and why I couldn’t play on Sundays to some of my teammates who had never heard of that idea. I know that I may be faced with this conflict in the future.

That is why I’ve already made the decision to not play on Sundays. I’m sure if I had to make the decision within a few days or even hours of a big game that was on a Sunday, I would have a very hard time making up my mind. But, because I have already made the decision, it will be easier to forgo the game. And I like what Clayton Christensen said about his choice to keep the Sabbath Day holy:

“It would have been very easy to say, in general, keeping the Sabbath day holy is the right commandment, but in my particular extenuating circumstances, it’s okay, just this once, if I don’t do it. And the reason that decision has proven so important to me is that my whole life has turned out to be an un-ending stream of extenuating circumstances, and had I crossed that line just that once, then the next time something came up that was so demanding and critical, it would have been so much easier to cross the line again. And when I have been subsequently confronted with opportunities to look at pornography or not pay my tithing, or compromise on others of God’s commandments, this lesson that I learned has been very important. The lesson is it really is easier to keep the commandments 100 percent of the time than it is 98 percent of the time. “

In the world today, it gets harder and harder to keep the Sabbath day holy, not only when it comes to sports, but with many other things. But I believe that despite what the world’s views may be, the important thing is to set my own rules and standards, and not break them.

Heavenly Father has promised us blessings when we put him first in our lives. Of course, He puts us first in all that we do. Don’t you think He deserves the same from us in return? He has given us six days to do what we would like, but has modestly asked us for one day in return. Not only can I find peace of mind by choosing not to participate in sports on Sundays, but blessings and love from my Heavenly Father as well. I know he loves me and each one of us, and that he is quick to reward us when we make the right decisions.

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